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Excerpts from this Manual SHOW INDEX Statement

    {FROM | IN} tbl_name
    [{FROM | IN} db_name]
    [WHERE expr]

SHOW INDEX returns table index information. The format resembles that of the SQLStatistics call in ODBC. This statement requires some privilege for any column in the table.

*************************** 1. row ***************************
        Table: city
   Non_unique: 0
     Key_name: PRIMARY
 Seq_in_index: 1
  Column_name: ID
    Collation: A
  Cardinality: 4188
     Sub_part: NULL
       Packed: NULL
   Index_type: BTREE
*************************** 2. row ***************************
        Table: city
   Non_unique: 1
     Key_name: CountryCode
 Seq_in_index: 1
  Column_name: CountryCode
    Collation: A
  Cardinality: 232
     Sub_part: NULL
       Packed: NULL
   Index_type: BTREE

An alternative to tbl_name FROM db_name syntax is db_name.tbl_name. These two statements are equivalent:

SHOW INDEX FROM mytable FROM mydb;
SHOW INDEX FROM mydb.mytable;

The WHERE clause can be given to select rows using more general conditions, as discussed in Section 24.8, “Extensions to SHOW Statements”.

SHOW INDEX returns the following fields:

  • Table

    The name of the table.

  • Non_unique

    0 if the index cannot contain duplicates, 1 if it can.

  • Key_name

    The name of the index. If the index is the primary key, the name is always PRIMARY.

  • Seq_in_index

    The column sequence number in the index, starting with 1.

  • Column_name

    The name of the column.

  • Collation

    How the column is sorted in the index. This can have values A (ascending) or NULL (not sorted).

  • Cardinality

    An estimate of the number of unique values in the index. To update this number, run ANALYZE TABLE or (for MyISAM tables) myisamchk -a.

    Cardinality is counted based on statistics stored as integers, so the value is not necessarily exact even for small tables. The higher the cardinality, the greater the chance that MySQL uses the index when doing joins.

  • Sub_part

    The index prefix. That is, the number of indexed characters if the column is only partly indexed, NULL if the entire column is indexed.


    Prefix limits are measured in bytes. However, prefix lengths for index specifications in CREATE TABLE, ALTER TABLE, and CREATE INDEX statements are interpreted as number of characters for nonbinary string types (CHAR, VARCHAR, TEXT) and number of bytes for binary string types (BINARY, VARBINARY, BLOB). Take this into account when specifying a prefix length for a nonbinary string column that uses a multibyte character set.

    For additional information about index prefixes, see Section 8.3.4, “Column Indexes”, and Section 13.1.14, “CREATE INDEX Statement”.

  • Packed

    Indicates how the key is packed. NULL if it is not.

  • Null

    Contains YES if the column may contain NULL values and '' if not.

  • Index_type

    The index method used (BTREE, FULLTEXT, HASH, RTREE).

  • Comment

    Information about the index not described in its own column, such as disabled if the index is disabled.

  • Index_comment

    Any comment provided for the index with a COMMENT attribute when the index was created.

Information about table indexes is also available from the INFORMATION_SCHEMA STATISTICS table. See Section 24.3.24, “The INFORMATION_SCHEMA STATISTICS Table”.

You can list a table's indexes with the mysqlshow -k db_name tbl_name command.